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What do you think, can lace be alive? Danièle Tournemine


What do you think, can lace be alive? Looking at Danièle’s lace creation, I must say yes. Her work is full of energy, and movement is spreading beyond the paper. Her lace people are moving. You can feel it. Her characters are inviting you to join them, to run, to jump with them, to feel their joy.


Just by looking at her picture, would you not march with them? Is it not tempting?


Danièle’s way of expressing motions is so powerful. Her creative abbreviation is very unique.


Let's Danièle tell us her story:


I learned bobbin lace during my university course in visual arts in the 80s. My studies were oriented towards contemporary art, but I wanted to know ancestral and artisanal techniques and incorporate them into contemporary works, artistic but not artisanal. So I signed up for evening classes at the Puy en Velay lace school, the French center for bobbin lace. https://www.ladentelledupuy.com/ I attended all four levels of bobbin lace teaching that school offered. I do not remember the name of my teacher, but she was "the best teacher and lace maker in France". https://www.meilleursouvriersdefrance.info/accueil.html


I really loved the technique, because it was complex, so magic! For me, bobbin lace, from bobbin winding to thread crisscross, is a bit like writing. And the unwinding of the thread along the formation of the lace is like a way that tells stories and also a voice, a path that runs under my hand, under my eyes…


I knew that I did not want to make traditional lace, but to use this demanding technique to integrate it into my artistic work. In 1979, I bought a catalog of Elena Holéczyova's works. It resonated with me on a deeper level of my soul. Looking back, I realize that she was my main inspiration. She was the person who gave me direction in my artistic approach.

Yarn and textiles have always been my main medium. Working with yarn, threads is enigmatic for me. In the beginning, I combined my own lace creation with machine lace. I sewed them together assembled on different textile supports (suit, shirts ...). But now, for more than 15 years, bobbin lace has become preponderant. My lace comes on different supports, sometimes between 2 glasses, sometimes assembled on old wood or old metals, on recovered paper (tea bag or other ...). I feel like I imprint my soul into the lace, and especially, my lace is part of me, and I am part of my lace. During my artist residency at the Musée du Feutre de Mouzon in France in 2016, I was introduced to, and I acquired other ancient and, for me, magical techniques as well. Everything is sewn, nothing is stuck... http://www.mouzon.fr/presentation-du-musee.html


The thread is a path for me. Bobbin lace allows me to materialize and tell stories: The spiral, the footprint, the meanders of the brain, the body in motion, everything is lace! Last few years, my main subject has been the way and the body on the move. The idea that we are made of paths and that at any time, we make our new paths. Our body is a bundle of paths. And all our thoughts are paths along the way... I walk a lot on real paths, especially in nature. They give me so much joy and well being. It is time to interact with the inner self, with nature, and with spiritual creation, which we are part of. This moment of walking offers me something very poetic, and I like to transfer this energy of this moment to my characters, my Allants. To imprint in them this momentum that is offered to me in my wanderings. The act of walking also has a social and political meaning, and unfortunately, the news of migrant misfortunes cannot be put aside either…

The happiness of wandering and anxiety of exile, these two facets of my subject are so mixed in my research, my stories, my technique of thread and lace that tells…


I do not consider myself a lacemaker, but as a plastic artist, an artist of thread and fiber. Therefore I don't feel like I can teach bobbin lace. However, I claim the fact that it is the incorporation of bobbin lace gives this magic and life to my work.

I attend collective exhibitions more frequently than I organize my own personal exhibitions. My own exhibitions I usually plan every 3 or 5 years. A personal exhibition takes a lot of effort. It is not just to find the right place, which will complement my work, but also to compose an exhibition to be a floating symphony of energy is time and energy-consuming. And I want to offer visitors the best enjoyment of my art performance. This is a reason why I take my exhibitions very seriously and choose fewer exhibitions over the quality of the event. This approach is very important to me.


I would like to tell you about a very beautiful project that I carried out in 2018 and which is, for me, the most sensitive. I was invited by the museum of Borne Sulinowo in Poland to make a mural on the theme of peace and the meeting between peoples. This time, I brought my lace figures on a non-textile background on "a fresco". I painted a wall in the museum, and I incorporated my lace into this scene.


Poland is a very special place for me. The creations which were exhibited in Poland are a reflection of my family story. My grandfather, a Polish tailor, and my grandmother, a Romanian dressmaker, came to France by boat at the start of the 20th century. They spread their roots in a new country, they brought something new to France, and they have been influenced by their new country. They made their own path.

This project was, therefore, for me, a way of making thread and lace, a link, a filiation, themes that touch me a lot. My Allants constantly throw threads, with their hands from their feet, like roots which are planted or torn from the ground.

I would like to thank Danièle for sharing with us her fascinating story. The lace world is very unique, and each lace artist is bringing something new, something intriguing, something that can inspire us in our own creativity or just show us a new way of thinking.


To touch Danièle’s world was a breathtaking experience. I was affected by her energy, which brightened my day and brought a smile to my soul. I hope this story has the same effect on you and will inspire you to your own creation.


If you would like to see more of Danièle’s work, please follow her Instagramhttps://www.instagram.com/d.tournemine/?hl=en

Or you can view her website.

And I'm sure Danièle would like to hear your comments about her work. It's always inspiring to interact with other artists.

Daniela

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